to the Body Mind Spirit Website!
Since 2005, the Physical Education for Body,
Mind and Spirit (BMS) project
has been offering martial arts and yoga classes to Alternative Education
Program (AEP) students in Santa Cruz, California. These students — who
are often faced with challenging circumstances — can particularly
benefit from new and positive ways of viewing
themselves and the world around them. Such new perspectives can be
found in the physical and mental training — and philosophical,
cultural and ethical perspectives — embedded in many martial
arts and yoga disciplines. New possibilities open up for the students
when they are equipped with new skills, stronger
bodies, and connections to a practice and to positive role models.
Clearly the need to increase physical
activity among our youth is imperative, given the disturbing national
statistics on childhood obesity and other
youth-related health issues. School-based programs provide
a valuable opportunity to do just that. These programs have a positive
impact not only on students but also on their families, teachers and
By exploring this website and taking an interest in starting a martial
arts–based and/or yoga-based PE program at your school, you are
taking a step toward tapping into the potential of your students.
What you will find on this website:
- Recommendations for creating
a successful martial arts and/or yoga-based PE program based
on the BMS program,
a three-year demonstration project funded by the U.S. Department
of Education's Carol M. White grants and implemented by Education,
Training and Research Associates (ETR) and the Santa
Cruz County Office of Education.
- Our experience designing, implementing and modifying
several styles of martial arts and yoga classes in Alternative
Education Program classrooms.
- A holistic approach to physical education that
supports psychological, interpersonal, spiritual,
cognitive and physical development.
- Resources for schools such as checklists,
steps to follow, worksheets and equipment lists for getting a martial
arts and/or yoga program "up and running." For your convenience,
downloadable pdf versions of of these materials are available
in Program Tables,
Materials and Worksheets in the Setting
Up a Program section.
- Information for martial arts and yoga instructors
to help them work effectively with students in Alternative Education
- Resources for administrators to support
their efforts at funding martial arts and/or yoga programs in their
school or district. These resources include talking points
on the potential benefits of such a program, evaluation results from
Mind and Spirit project, and more.
- Course plans and curricula for
martial arts and yoga styles that are designed to match
the specific learning needs of Alternative Education Program students
and are linked to PE standards.
- A 20-lesson classroom-based nutrition and fitness
curriculum — Come and Get
It: Nutrition and Physical Fitness for Lifelong Health — designed
to match the specific learning needs of Alternative Education Program
- A 20-lesson martial arts and fitness curriculum — Martial
Arts Fitness. This experiential course was developed specifically
for the BMS project by Sensei Lori Mullen, a martial arts instructor
with her black belt in Chinese Gung-fu.
- A pdf version of the Program Guide for Developing
Martial Arts and Yoga Programs in Alternative Education Settings.
This 129-page program guide
was developed by project staff and is a print version
of the information found on this website.